So, the day arrived for the Grandparents to leave today.  Dadda headed to work early as usual, and then the children needed to be at their various places by 0800, which was probably a good thing as it meant they didn’t dwell too much on what was happening.

After I had returned from the school run, we packed up the Grandparents and I drove them back the 30 minutes into the town.  The plan then was to show them various places that were now a part of our life, so they could relate more to what we were doing and saying.  I first drove all the way out to the furthest island of the town where the little lady does her sjöscouts.  I then took them over the high rock path to the next island’s sandy beach for a bracing leg stretch before their 3 hour train journey.  After that we drove past where the children have their dance lessons and headed into town.  We had a nosy around, and got Grandad a better hat to keep his head warm.  I also showed them around the island that the marine museum was on and a few other bits and pieces before heading back to say bye to Dadda at his office building.  With them both boarded safely onto the train for their few days in Denmark before flying home, I headed back to pick up my trio.

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We have learnt of another positive lifestyle habit the Swedes have.  Activities for children (as in after school activities) stop very early in the run up to Christmas, and recommence again, no earlier than mid January, and in some cases, the last week of January.  This is for 2 reasons.  Adults recognise that the pressures on children at this time of year can be quite a lot, with various plays, concerts, and Christmas activities going on, and want to ease the burden for them….although with everyone easing the burden, they just end up with a nice long break, and no excess of Christmas themed commitments, which become so overbearing at times, it makes families a little stressed out and not enjoying the season as they should. (There doesn’t seem to be a silly season attitude from the school either).  The other reason is that Sweden is all about families being together and enjoying their time together, and this enables that to happen more for Christmas as you aren’t ferrying various children in different directions!  So, we are now winding down already.  Our little lady had her last sjöscouts last Tuesday, her last ballet was today (which Dadda went to watch as parents were allowed in), the mini men finished gymnastics and football at the weekend, and little man no.1 will have his last ballet lesson Friday 🙂  I don’t think you can help returning feeling refreshed in the New Year with a break like that!